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National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme

Deliverable: Monitoring of emissions reporting, managing carbon units and acquitting liability via the Australian National Registry of Emissions Units and the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme.

Snapshot

The National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007 introduced a single national framework for reporting and disseminating company information about greenhouse gas emissions, energy production, energy consumption and other specified information.

The objectives of this Act are to:

  • inform government policy formulation and the Australian public
  • meet Australia’s international reporting obligations
  • assist Commonwealth, state and territory government programs and activities
  • underpin the introduction of an emissions trading scheme in the future
  • avoid duplication of similar reporting requirements in the states and territories.

Information reported through the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme provides the basis for assessing liability under the carbon pricing mechanism and informs government and the general public about emissions and energy flows across Australia.

In 2012–13, the Clean Energy Regulator’s effective administration of the scheme included the introduction of a new online reporting system and enhancements to information sharing among jurisdictions.

Publication of the National Greenhouse and Energy Register

The Clean Energy Regulator published an extract of the National Greenhouse and Energy Register for 2011–12 in February 2013. All controlling corporations registered during the year for reporting 2011–12 data were included in that extract.

Publication of data

The Clean Energy Regulator published the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme data for 2011–12 on 28 February 2013. The publication reflects data reported by corporations that met the legislated threshold of 50 kilotonnes of carbon dioxide–equivalent greenhouse gas emissions in the financial year. It includes all total scope 1 greenhouse gas emissions, total scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions and total energy consumption data for 2011–12 (except in two cases where the corporations applied to the Clean Energy Regulator requesting their information not be published, due to matters having a commercial value or trade secrets, and decisions for both applications are pending).

Reporting system

A new online reporting system, the Emissions and Energy Reporting System, was released in April 2013 to assist liable entities under the carbon pricing mechanism to report their interim emissions numbers. The system will be used by controlling corporations and liable entities to prepare and submit all reports required under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme.

Audits

During 2012–13, 218 audits were completed under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Audit Framework. This included 45 audits initiated by the Clean Energy Regulator as part of the annual National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme audit program. At 30 June 2013, there were 194 registered greenhouse and energy auditors.

Information sharing

The Clean Energy Regulator shared information reported under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme and streamlined processes to assist Commonwealth, state and territory government programs and activities. This was supported by memoranda of understanding between government authorities and the Clean Energy Regulator.

Feature: Maturing the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme audit program

This year, the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Audit Framework was extended to cover all the schemes that the Clean Energy Regulator administers.

The National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Audit Framework plays a key role in assurance over reported data and aligns with all relevant, current Australian and international audit and assurance standards.

Each year, the Clean Energy Regulator reviews the data submitted by reporting corporations, to make sure that the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Scheme is delivering on its intentions. The review makes sure that the measurement and reporting methodologies are appropriate and that the data reported is accurate.

During 2012–13, 218 audits were completed under the audit framework.

The results of the audit program indicate that industry capability and experience in reporting energy and emissions data is high, with only very low numbers of errors found. This demonstrates that the Clean Energy Regulator is performing effectively in proactively identifying issues in the data that is reported.

Complementing our audit work, the Australian Government Auditing and Assurance Standards Board prepared a set of audit program guidelines for the scheme to provide standard assurance and audit procedures.

To ensure its ongoing effectiveness, it was timely to introduce new processes and standards for auditing the scheme in 2012–13, in line with the findings of the audit program and the Auditing and Assurance Standards Board guidelines.

In November, a new auditor registration instrument was introduced to specify the qualifications that an auditor must have for them to be registered as a greenhouse and energy auditor. In addition, the introduction of the carbon pricing mechanism created new audit responsibilities for liable entities.

Under the Clean Energy Act 2011, there is a mandatory requirement for those companies with emissions in excess of 125,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide-equivalent to provide an audit report prior to submitting their final emissions report. This will improve the accuracy and integrity of data reported to the Clean Energy Regulator.

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